It's Not Just the Leaves Changing Color!

By Pam Christensen

The leaves are glowing with their fall hues and as I write this article I’m looking out over Puget Sound’s offer of a spectacular fall sunset. It seems that Benjamin Moore planned Caliente as their color of the year around Nature’s fall brilliance. To quote Ellen O'Neill, Benjamin Moore & Co. “Caliente is the signature color of a modern architectural masterpiece; a lush carpet rolled out for a grand arrival; the assured backdrop for a book-lined library; a powerful first impression on a glossy front door. The eye can’t help but follow its bold strokes. Harness the vitality.” This rich blood red is perfect as the choice to create a rich statement front door or as the rich warm accent color to add to a room with grays or beiges. It is dark and bold and not the right choice for a small room or home as a wall color, but if your overall wall color palette is gray or beige, Caliente throw pillows, or other accessories will add that splash of mystery and drama to your décor. If you do have a home with an entry office or den, this rich color could create a warm rich workspace and striking first impression of your home. I prefer using rich reds, burgundy, deep purples and oranges for fall staging palettes, bringing the beauty of nature into the home.

Sherwin Williams is also going for bright and bold, but rather than red it has chosen Oceanside. This strong moody blue is stated to be both accessible and elusive. "People today have a growing sense of adventure, and it is making its way into even the coziest corners of our homes. We are craving things that remind us of bright folklore, like mermaids and expeditions across continents," says Sue Wadden, director of color marketing at Sherwin Williams. "Oceanside is the color of wanderlust right in our own homes. This rich blue is a cocoon color to quote Editor in Chief of House Beautiful, Sophie Donelson. " We often see similar hues chosen for libraries and studies, because its depth makes it comforting, but also bold and adventurous. It's like watching a Nature channel deep-sea exploration from the comfort of your sofa!" It again is color that is not for the color shy, but is a fabulous accent to update a beige or gray color scheme. If you want to try a bold color but don’t want it to be too overwhelming, you can try either of these shades in a powder room to add a bit of drama.

Glidden Paint has also chosen to go bold. They have selected Deep Onyx (00NN 07/000), which they describe as a no-fuss shade of black that encourages a "less is more" approach to decor. It almost has a chalkboard-like look to it, which is why it doesn't feel too harsh when seen on walls and the floor. Just make sure you pair this color with light furnishings, white moldings, and white light fixtures to create a white and black contrast. I think adding art with Caliente or Oceanside would be an amazing look!

Olympic Paint has also chosen black for 2018, going with Black Magic. This is very similar to Shadow, Benjamin Moore’s 2017 color of the year. I feel that black paired with white creates a sophisticated statement which can be used in every décor, from the ultra-modern to extremely traditional. I think that if you would like to experiment with a bold color, either of these two shades of black would give you a timeless look that is very versatile. I have a family room with black walls and white wainscoting in my home and I must say I never tire of it and the black still looks new even after years of entertaining family and friends.

Always keep in mind that if you are creating a color scheme in your own home, you have to love it! Color trends come and go, and your color choices should feel warm and welcoming to you each time you walk in your door. While paint is one of the least expensive changes that can have the most impact, you still don’t want to be changing your wall color every year because you got tired of that Caliente room! And of course, when choosing colors to sell, neutrals are still the best choice. Buyers still shy away from strong colors and are intimidated by the thought of covering deep hues.

I’d love to hear from you! Please visit my Facebook page at and post a comment. I’d love to hear your questions or challenges.

About the author...

Pam Christensen is an Accredited Staging Professional Master, a Certified Real Estate Instructor and teaches an Advanced Home Staging Certification course. Her company, Staging for Charisma, is one of the leading home staging companies in the greater Seattle area, and one of the few that specializes in working with investors to help them maximize their return on investment by providing high quality staging that get results!

REAPS is the oldest – and largest - Professional Association for the real estate investor this side of the Mississippi. We provide education and networking resources for real estate investors, those who want to be investors and anyone who provides value to our members. Our goals are to motivate and support our members and guests through education, discussion, legislative action and networking. We host over 40 live events a year around Puget Sound and they are all open to the public. If you've never attended one of our meetings, just email our office at [email protected] and be our guest for free!"

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